It was another disappointing day for Nigeria athletics faithful expecting to see the country’s name on the medals table, as all chances of any Nigerian athlete winning an individual medal was diminished on Day 8 of the World Championships.
The women’s Long Jump was supposed to offer a glimmer of hope for the country on the day, having Blessing Okagbare-Ighoteguonor among the top 12 that competed in the final. Unfortunately, things were not to be for the former National Champion, as she was outclassed by her competitors.
Okagbare-Ighoteguonor recorded a best leap of 6.55m, which placed her 8th overall on the standings and ended her hopes of winning her first global championship medal in three years.
With her performances in London so far, it remains to be seen how much she’s willing to bounce back next year, or if she’s willing to take time off to get back to her best.
USA’s Brittney Reese was the event winner, after producing one of the best performances on the night, which saw her become the first woman to win four Long Jump titles in World Championships history.
Reese leapt to a distance of 7.02m on her fifth attempt to get the needed victory ahead of Darya Klishina, competing as an Authorised Neutral Athlete soared to a Season’s Best (SB) of 7.00m in order to win her first global medal, while defending Champion, Tianna Bartoletta needed a last attempt of 6.97m to settle for Bronze.
Other Nigerian athletes in action that failed to produce worthy performances were the duo of Tobi Amusan and Lindsey Lindley, as they were knocked out in the semifinals of the women’s 100m Hurdles.
In the heats, Amusan raced to a time of 12.97s to finish 3rd and progress to the semis, with fans expecting her to do better. However, a rather below par performance saw her clock 13.04s to place 4th, and fail to qualify for the final.
This was a rather disappointing performance by Amusan, considering she came to the Championship as one of the best in the world, having clocked a Personal Best (PB) of 12.57s en-route her winning the NCAA title.
Lindley also wasn’t a better performer, recording 13.18s to finish 7th in her semifinal heat, after she recorded a faster time of 13.08s in the qualifying rounds.
The country now has only the women’s 4x100m and 4x400m, as her only chances of winning a medal and positioning her name on the medal’s table.